From emotional manipulation
to mental abuse
The distance between the emotional manipulation in couples and a deeper, depraved, manipulation is great, nevertheless it is not rare: manipulating, a little or a lot depending on the case, is a largely widespread temptation. The manipulator leads the other to carry out actions which are to his exclusive advantage. The mental abuser, on the other hand, uses manipulating tactics systematically, to the point of destroying his partner.
The couple always faces problems:
One of the two always tries to get the better of the other, to dominate a little. This is part of the dynamics as a couple and represents “ordinary manipulation”.
The mental abuser, on the contrary, shapes his partner’s personality to his own will and liking, taking away any willingness, self-esteem and will to live. Affective and financial dependence, diminishment, blackmail, private and public denigration, blame and invasion of the other person’s life are his favorite weapons.
Part one: “ordinary” manipulation in ordinary couples
Part two: mental abuse
Pascale Chapaux-Morelli is president of AAVVP, an association to help the victims of psychological harassment and mental abuse.
Pascal Couderc is a psychotherapist, psychoanalyst, specialist in addictive behaviors.